Sexing rabbits can be tricky, especially in rabbits under 6 weeks of age or if you are not experienced in doing so. Accurately, sexing from 8 weeks of age is often easier. If you are ever unsure, take your rabbit to your rabbit-savvy vet for them or a vet nurse to double-check.
Steps to follow:
1. Always be gentle when handling your rabbit – use a quiet and calm area which is not going to cause them undue stress. Use a table with a towel on it, or sit on the floor with the rabbit.
2. Never place your rabbit on its back. This is highly stressful for them and places them in a trance-like state. It is not necessary to handle rabbits in this way to sex them.
3. It may be best to ask someone to hold your rabbit for you, as holding the rabbit securely whilst also trying to sex them can be difficult.
4. Get someone who is confident in handling rabbits to carefully lift them up by placing one hand under their bottom and one hand on the underside of their chest, turning them so they are held against the handler’s body at a 90-degree angle, resting on their tail area with their chest facing towards you.
5. When sexing rabbits, do not rely on males (bucks) to have obvious testicles. Bucks under 10 weeks old may not have descended testicles, and all males can draw them back into the abdomen, so they may not be obvious.
6. To view the genitals more clearly, part the fur around them.
7. Apply gentle pressure to the top of the genitals (above the anus). In male rabbits, the penis will protrude and have a rounded entrance.
8. If the rabbit is female, instead of a penis with a rounded opening, you will see the vulva, which has a vertical slit opening. The vulva of a female rabbit is pointier than the penis of a male rabbit.